How to Make Mail Art Stationery

hi I'm Julia hood and I'm the manager of school and family learning here at Renault the house in our Renaldo pop-up studio today I'm gonna show you how to make decorative stationery to send letters to friends and family with a bit of an artistic flair we'll show you how to make this Pat sheet stationary this is from an eight-and-a-half by 11 sheet of paper and we've decorated it with stamps we can also make decorative stationery with markers and then here's another example of a piece of stationery where we used wax crayons and watercolor that resisted the wax to make a full sheet of stationery next I'll show you what you'll need to create these things and how to make it thanks for joining today for this project you'll need some paper eight-and-a-half by eleven cut in half will also work markers and other drawing implements like colored pencils crayons watercolors and stamps and ink

to make stamped stationery what you'll need is a piece of paper a rubber stamp of some form and an ink pad and just think about the different kinds of patterns and decorations that you can use here I'm putting a stamp in the top left corner and then in the bottom right corner of a piece of paper and then we'll write the letter in between them here for this one I'm taking a small stamp and repeating a pattern over and over along the top and bottom you could also do it up and down the sides for this decorated edge stationary you'll need a scrap sheet of paper and then put the paper that you want to decorate on top of the scrap paper where are these two meet up you can take markers of any color or size and make a series of lines along the edge bleeding over onto the scrap paper like so

for this wax resist stationary you'll need watercolor brush and water and then crayons and you'll start by making some kind of pattern or design with crayons leaving space for writing a letter

then you'll want to create a watercolor wash over the main part of the paper here I'm using orange which is a light color and I am watering it down to make it even lighter so that later I can write on it and have a legible letter now that you've seen these three options for making decorative stationery what other things can you come up with with the materials that you can find for inspiration about sending letters you can look at the links below for letters that the reynolds children sent to their parents RJ and Catherine Reynolds when they were apart you can also find some examples of Correspondence sent between artists in the Renaldo house collection check it out

When the Reynolds family lived at Reynolda, different members of the family would sometimes travel. They would write letters to one another to stay connected. View letters that Katharine and R.J. Reynolds’ children sent to them here.

View a letter from Nancy Reynolds to her parents, written in 1917.
View a letter from Mary Reynolds to her parents.

Reynolda revealed video series

See all videos

From the 1910s to the late 1950s, the segregated community of Five Row was home to Reynolda’s African American farm workers and their families.

Watch Now

A new type of Southern woman, Katharine Reynolds combined the traditional role of wife and mother with progressive practices on healthy living, education, and agricultural reform.

Watch Now